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Live From The Current Studio

Twerps perform in The Current studio

  Play Now [18:27]

by Mark Wheat

April 09, 2015

Twerps - I Don't Mind (Live on 89.3 The Current)
by MPR
Twerps - Strangers (Live on 89.3 The Current)
by MPR
Twerps - Consecutive Seasons (Live on 89.3 The Current)
by MPR
Twerps perform in The Current studio
Twerps perform in The Current studio
MPR photo/Leah Garaas

Perhaps it's a good thing Twerps' tour itinerary doesn't take them into Wisconsin.

That's because a Dairy State cover band with similar but not identical nomenclature who describe themselves as "Western Wisconsin's leading variety-show band" may not take too kindly to the Australians' visit. "We've been fighting with them over the Internet for years," says Twerps guitarist and singer Jules McFarlane. "They said, 'You have to change your name or else we'll sue you'."

The Melbourne four-piece simply dropped the word "the" from their name and a legal battle was avoided. That's convenient, because Twerps — dubbed "the best new band in Australia" by Uncut magazine following their debut EP — have been busy touring the U.S. and will soon depart for a month-long tour of Europe.

In town to play at the 7th Street Entry in Minneapolis, Twerps — comprising McFarlane as well as Marty Frawley on guitar and vocals, Alex Macfarlane on drums and vocals, and Gus Lord on bass — stopped in to The Current studio to play some songs and to chat with Mark Wheat.

Marty and Jules admit they don't like to read reviews, but some insights are positive. For example, with their jangly guitars and blend of male and female vocals, Twerps have drawn comparisons to Belle and Sebastian, and that sits nicely with Jules. "I remember when I discovered Belle and Sebastian and discovered people who were fans of B&S, I felt like, 'These people are good people' and this is neat," she says, "so when we got asked [to open for them], it was a big deal."

Similar to the affable Glaswegians, Marty says he takes time to mingle with fans. "We've met lots of people on the road who have come to our shows," he explains. "I like to chat to all of them because I think it's important to give real life to what people and music are if they're into it."

Listen to the complete interview to hear more about the Melbourne music scene and about how bassist Gus Lord created a music video for one of the band's singles.

Songs Performed

"I Don't Mind"
"Consecutive Seasons"
The first two songs are off Twerps' most recent album, Range Anxiety, and the third song is on Twerps' 2014 EP, Underlay, both available in the U.S. on Merge Records.

Hosted by Mark Wheat
Produced by Derrick Stevens
Engineered by Michael DeMark
Web feature by Luke Taylor